These muffins have been on my to-bake list for months. Unfortunately, I was self-banned from baking for the month before the big, Mexican Birthday trip. One of the only good things about that trip being done and dusted is that the oven is allowed back in my life.
Sweet squash and salty feta, bound together in a peppery, parmesan-laden dough…what’s not to like about that?
These muffins are packed full of flavor. I subbed pinenuts for the sunflower seeds, but otherwise followed the recipe exactly. Next time, however, I will make a few adjustments.
First, more squash. I would probably use at least 12 oz next time (instead of the 9 it calls for). I want squash in every bite! Second, I found them a tad dry, so I would bake them a few minutes shorter and I would use full-fat milk (I used skim, since that’s what I had). I think the extra fat and the extra soft squash would fix that dryness right up! Granted, right now I’m eating them along with a big bowl of sausage, white bean and rosemary soup and I have no complaints about their moistness or texture. Nom, cheezy, bizcuity, peppery muffins.
Squash and Feta Muffins
Adapted from 101 Cookbooks. Makes 12.
As mentioned above, I would suggest adding more squash, using whole milk, and not overcooking these. The recipe below is the original, with my notes. And, oh, ha. I just realized the recipe DOES tell you chop the spinach- I thought the whole baby spinach leave were kind of weird-oopsies!
2 T olive oil
2 c (9 oz/255g) cubed pumpkin or butternut squash, 1/2″ cubes (I would increase this to 12 oz)
1 lg handful of baby spinach, chopped (do chop it, lol)
2 T chopped parsley or cilantro (I used cilantro)
3 T sunflower seeds (I used pine nuts instead)
3/4 c (1 oz/30g) freshly grated Parmesan
3.5 oz (100g/ .5 cup) crumbled feta
2 t whole-grain mustard
2 lg eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 c milk (use whole milk)
2 c flour
4 t baking powder
1 t fine-grain sea salt
- Heat oven to 400°F. Grease a muffin pan and set aside
- Toss the squash with the olive oil and some salt and pepper. Spread on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake ~20 minutes, until soft. Set aside to cool
- In a large bowl, toss 2/3 of the squash with the spinach, cilantro, sunflower seeds, parmesan, 2/3 of the feta and the mustard. Stir gently to combine
- In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs and milk. Pour over the squash mixture and gently mx
- Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and a LOT of black pepper over the wet ingredients and fold in. Mix until JUST combined
- Divide among the prepared muffin cups and top each with the remaining squash and feta
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden, but not overcooked! Poke them, they’ll feel firm when done. I would err on the side of lighter rather than darker
- Let cool a couple of minutes then remove to a cooling rack